CMOS: When we talk about using inclusive language, who are we talking about including? SG: Everyone—but especially readers from groups that have historically been excluded by the conventions used and the assumptions made in publishing. One of the earliest and most obvious examples would be
Recently a reader wrote to us questioning some of the alphabetizing recommendations in The Chicago Manual of Style . . .
“Between her and me”? Test your knowledge of pronoun usage! This month’s workout, “Personal Pronouns,” centers on sections 5.38–46 of CMOS.
How many times have you wavered over putting hyphens into an expression that combines numbers with some kind of measure? Is the child six-years-old or six years old?
This month’s workout, “Rules for Quoting,” centers on sections 13.7–8 of CMOS. Advanced editors might tackle the questions cold; learners can study those sections of the Manual before answering the questions.
For years, it seems, it’s been impossible to find a language-related post or article online without a stickler making trouble in the comments section. Even on political, social, and retail sites, outraged commenters love to point out a a missplaced apostrophe as a way to challenge the
CMOS: How did you come to think about writing as “flabby”? HS: Many years ago, I read Richard Lanham’s book Revising Prose, which influenced me deeply as a writer. Lanham teaches you to identify the “lard factor” in your writing, based on the percentage of words that you could omit without significantly changing its meaning. The Writer’s Diet follows similar principles, but with
Are you ready for some heavy lifting? Today’s workout centers on sections 5.108–13 of CMOS. . . . True or false:
“Oozing slowly across the floor, Marvin watched the salad dressing.” “I smelled the oysters coming down the stairs for dinner.” Most of us don’t have to worry about overlooking gaffes as obvious as these, but more subtle danglers—or misplaced modifiers—sometimes sneak by even the most careful
Shortcuts in editing may be frowned upon, but when it comes to word processing, editing shortcuts are not only allowed, they’re essential. If you’re still fumbling around in the pull-down menus, fighting with features that won’t leave you alone, and wasting time on tasks that could